Struggling with Dry January? These facts about how alcohol affects the body should help.

1292149 woman girl generic drinking alcohol drug substance misuseWhether youre raising money for charity, are on a detox or simply fancy a break from the booze after a heavy Christmas, taking a few weeks off from alcohol can be a great thing. If youre finding your willpower is dwindling as the weeks go by however, have a read of the information below which explains the side effects your body experiences if you often have a few more drinks than you should.

Brain

 Alcohol is a depressant and it therefore slows down the brain. Cutting down on your daily or weekly intake may help you to feel less depressed and anxious and by not drinking more than the recommended guidelines youll also avoid long-term damage to your memory.

Heart

 If youre frequently drinking too much then you will be damaging this very important organ in your body and are putting yourself at risk of heart disease.

Blood Pressure

 One in three adults in the UK have high bloody pressure and drinking too much is one of the most common reasons.

Breast Cancer (women)

 Very few people are aware of this but drinking alcohol increases your risk of developing breast cancer. One study showed that breast cancer increased by 6% for each 10 grams of alcohol consumed which is just slightly over one unit of alcohol per day.

Pancreas

 The pancreas produces digestive juices and hormones which aid digestion and blood sugar regulation. Frequently drinking too much can cause pancreatitis which is a serious condition caused by your pancreas becoming inflamed. This can also trigger the development of diabetes.

Liver

 We all know that drinking too much can have serious consequences on the liver but exactly why is this? The liver converts food into energy and helps get rid of waste products. It also plays a vital role in fighting infections. Unfortunately, when your liver is damaged you wont normally know about it until its serious so its vital to look after it.

Reproduction

The government advises that women trying for a baby should avoid alcohol altogether as it can affect the menstrual cycle and reduce the chances of conceiving. Its not just women who should be cautious however. Alcohol has been shown to reduce testosterone levels in men and sperm can also take a dip in performance which makes it much harder to conceive.

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